Page images



TENDER child of summers three,
Seeking her little bed at night,
Paused on the dark stair timidly.
"Oh, mother! Take my hand," said she,
"And then the dark will all be light."

We older children grope our way
From dark behind to dark before;
And only when our hands we lay,
Dear Lord, in Thine, the night is day
And there is darkness nevermore.

Reach downward to the sunless days
Wherein our guides are blind as we,
And faith is small and hope delays;
Take Thou the hands of prayer we raise,
And let us feel the light of Thee.





T her easel, brush in hand,

Clad in silk attire,

Painting" sunsets," vague and grand,
(Clumsy clouds of fire!)
Flaxen hair in shining sheaves;

Pink and pearly skin;

Fingers, which, like lily leaves,

Neither toil nor spin ;

At her belt a sun-flower bound,
Daisies on the table,

Plaques and panels all around-
That's æsthetic Mabel!


In the kitchen, fork in hand,
Clad in coarse attire,
Dishing oysters, fried and panned,
From a blazing fire:

Dusty hair in frowsy knots;

Worn and withered skin;—
Fingers brown and hard as nuts,
(When the frosts begin ;)—
Baking-board, one side aground;
Wash-tub, on the other;

Pots and skillets all around,

That is Mabel's mother!



A BEAUTIFUL babe in her cradle bed lay;

Her age might be reckoned by less than a day. Two fairies stood watching her tiny clenched fist, And rose-bud mouth that the angels had kissed. Said one to the other, "What fairer abode

Could heaven, in its bounty, on us have bestowed ?"
Said the other, "None fairer; I claim her my own
By right of discovery: I came here alone."

"Ah, no,” said the first, "that cannot be true,
Since no one denies I'm the shadow of you."

[ocr errors]

I came here alone." 'Nay, I stood by your side." “I will dwell on her lips." "In her heart I will hide." The Smile wreathed her lips, falling slightly apart, The Sigh sank in sadness down into her heart. This was ages ago; how long I forget;

But the Smile and the Sigh strive for mastery yet.



PAIN'S furnace heat within me quivers,

God's breath upon the flame doth blow,

And all my heart in anguish shivers,
And trembles at the fiery glow;
And yet I whisper: As God will!

And in His hottest fire hold still.

He comes and lays my heart, all heated,
On the hard anvil, minded so

Into His own fair shape to beat it

With His great hammer, blow on blow;
And yet I whisper: As God will!

And at His heaviest blows hold still.

He takes my softened heart and beats it;
The sparks fly off at every blow;

He turns it o'er and o'er and heats it,
And lets it cool, and makes it glow;

And yet I whisper: As God will!
And in His mighty hand hold still.

Why should I murmur? For the sorrow
Thus only longer-lived would be;
Its end may come, and will to-morrow,
When God has done His work in me;

So I say, trusting: As God will!
And, trusting to the end, hold still.

He kindles for my profit purely
Affliction's glowing, fiery brand,
And all His heaviest blows are surely
Inflicted by a master hand;

So I say, praying: As God will!
And hope in Him, and suffer still.




TAKE the best of yourself. Watch, and plant, and Cultivate! Cultivate! Falter not, faint not! Press onward! Persevere ! Perhaps you cannot bear such lordly fruit, nor yet such rare, rich flowers as others; but what of that? Bear the best you can. 'Tis all God asks.

Your flowers may only be the daisies and buttercups of life-the little words and smiles and handshakes and helpful looks; but we love these flowers full well. We may stop to look at a tulip's gorgeous colors, and admire the creamy whiteness of a noble lily; but it is to the little flowers we turn with tenderest thought. We watch for snowdrops with longing eyes, and scent the fragrance of the violet with a keen delight. So let your life grow sweet scented with all pleasant thoughts and gentle words and kindly deeds.



OOD master, turn your face this way; And let your pallet lie, I pray. Men say that you are keen and wise, That you can paint the bird that flies, And catch the shadow from the sun, And paint the day ere it be done. I've heard so much that you could do, O'er many a mile I've come to you, Past mountain ridge and rippling stream I've come, as led by some fair dream, To show you these and beg that you Will paint my grandson; please, sir, do. Ah, when they told me he was dead I could not rest me in my bed. See, here are eggs and butter too, Sage and parsley, thyme and rue. And in this basket you will find A fresh-made cheese and honey. Mind, These are his clothes, his little skirts— Just three years old he was. It hurts Me much to see this little dressHe wore it last. What say you? Yes, 'Tis blue with band of scarlet braid. I recollect his mother made It, just one month before she died. His shoes, you see, are yellow hide. How proud he was to see his feet In shoes so pretty! See how neat

« PreviousContinue »